The older I get, the more I understand why people can begin to feel depressed during the HolyDaze. I call them that on purpose: Holy Daze. This is the time, from the end of October till the following year, where we gather our Families together, where we Honor our Dead, our Elders, our Ancestors. This is a Holy Time, when the plants and Mother Earth nestle deep within the Dream, when those who can, hibernate. When those who cannot, struggle to find Rest.
And consequently, during all this gathering up, there are holes. Some are still gaping, some are healing, but all are missed. Having *Angels* on my shoulder is comforting in many ways, but OH these are times when I wish I could laugh with my Grammy again, when I could bake her favorite cake, sit down with the Family all whole and healed. And not just the human holes in my heart. I miss my Tundra, I miss Mr. Bear Britches. I still miss my Puck.
The longer you live, the more holes in your heart you wind up with. These are holes which will never be filled, will always be "just that particular shape" of the Missed. And I wouldn't WANT them to be filled. The band-aids my heart is filled with keep me connected to the World.
And this is the Season where we forgive. When we forgive ourselves, first... That's been my toughest lesson, learning to forgive myself... And then forgive the important people in our lives whom we have disconnected from for one reason or another. Because after all, I don't want the holes in my heart to crust over from the things I wish I'd said, from the things I wish I'd forgiven while I had the chance. I don't want to remember that the last thing I said to an Important person in my life was negative, or hurtful, or neglectful.
So, for today, JUST today, JUST for RIGHT NOW, I forgive myself. I invite you all to forgive yourselves. I invite us all to cast forgiveness like the fallen leaves of Autumn which make for the compost of Spring. Have you seen the way the sunlight dapples across the faces of the leaves as they flutter in the wind? I cast forgiveness like those leaves, to flutter in my heart until they find a nice warm place to make compost.
I met and spoke at length with Wallace Black Elk once, who told me to ask myself, when confronted with adversity, "Does It Grow Corn?" Is what you are struggling with going to generate a positive outcome? If not, throw it in the compost pile. ("The question “Does It Grow Corn?” – is a Native American [sic] standard by which to scrutinize new models and approaches")
So May the Spirit of the Season find a warm place to grow in our hearts. For today, I am going to smile, even if it starts with me taking my fingers and forcing the edges of my lips up.